Finding an oregano substitute is as easy as looking right in your own spice cabinet. Oregano is a strong herb used heavily in many cuisines, especially the Mediterranean one.
If your recipe calls for oregano and you do not have it do not rush to the store yet.
Although oregano has a very distinguishable robust taste and adds earthy flavor to dishes, especially in Mediterranean cuisine, there are plenty of options to choose from if needed.
When making a dish that calls for oregano, the best way is to first see what you have on hand. If the recipe calls for oregano, chances are the recipe is referring to dry oregano. If you happen to have fresh oregano on hand, it can easily be swapped out with 3 teaspoons of fresh to one teaspoon of dried oregano.
An even easier oregano substitute can be made by checking to see what dried herbs you have in your cabinet and how to use them to enhance the flavor of your dishes. As many of these herbs are closely related in the mint family, they can often be switched out depending on your recipe.
A close relative of oregano, an excellent substitute for its aromatic and slightly sweet profile. Basil is a wonderful flavor to add to dishes that contain tomatoes, olive oil, syrups, berries, and salad dressings. Don't underestimate the light flavor of basil, as it will add a fresh and slightly sweet taste to many tomato-based dishes. You can use fresh basil or in its dried form.
An herb closely related to oregano. The fresh leaves of marjoram not only look similar to oregano but have a similar flavor. This herb is a good oregano substitution in many dishes, such as marinades, pasta sauce, and even roasted veggies.
A light floral herb that can be used in place of oregano in many dips, marinades, and meat dishes. Thyme has a strong flavor, so use it sparingly. Consider varying the amount according to your liking and the particular needs of your recipe. Use a dried version or a fresh form of thyme.
Like oregano, rosemary has a robust flavor that is easily distinguished. Rosemary can be used as a great substitute with hearty type dishes like lamb, marinades, and stews.
In many recipes, Italian seasoning is a good substitute for oregano, particularly when oregano's strong, herbaceous flavors are preferred, like in many Italian recipes. Italian seasoning, typically a mixture of oregano, basil, thyme, and rosemary, offers a well-balanced combination of Mediterranean flavors in a single jar. Use an equal amount of Italian seasoning in your recipe instead of oregano, tasting as needed. This blend offers the convenience of several herbs in a single, well-balanced mixture, adding depth to pasta sauces, pizzas, grilled vegetables, and grilled meats. Italian seasoning is a popular choice for people who want to add a deep, well-rounded Mediterranean flavor to their food because of its adaptability.
A surprisingly good alternative to oregano because of its savory and slightly peppery flavor. It works well with stuffing, poultry, and hearty winter meals. The earthy, warm notes of sage can give your recipes depth and a unique twist when oregano isn't available.
An earthy light flavor is one spice that is very common in many dishes as well as a garnish to add color. You can use fresh parsley or dried parsley.
Oregano tastes earthy and pungent and can even smell peppery to some. With oregano, a lot can go a long way, as it adds tremendous flavor to many meat dishes, salad dressings, and garlic bread.
Marjoram is a herb with a milder flavor closely related to oregano. Marjoram and oregano are members of the Lamiaceae family of plants and have comparable flavor profiles. But marjoram is often described as tasting sweeter and more delicate, while oregano is more potent and aromatic. Because of its milder flavor, marjoram makes a great alternative to oregano when you want to add a hint of herbaceous flavor to your food without overpowering it. It is an excellent addition to many recipes, such as stews, meat dishes, soups, and sauces.
Although they are members of the same botanical family (Lamiaceae), mint is a completely different herb that has a different flavor profile, so substituting mint for oregano could drastically change the flavor of your meal. The earthy, savory, and slightly bittersweet flavor of oregano is very different from the fresh, cool, and occasionally sweet flavor of mint. It is not a suitable oregano substitutes.
🌿 Recipes with Oregano
- An easy weeknight chicken dinner, Oregano Chicken, is made with boneless chicken, lemon, and delicious spices.
- These Meatloaf Cupcakes are very easy and a great kid-friendly dinner idea. They freeze very well too!
- Try this simple Oven-Baked Chicken Cacciatore recipe for another kid-friendly chicken dish.
- Garlic bread in the Air Fryer is a quick and easy 5-minute appetizer or side dish for any meal—a party and family favorite.
📣 Related Recipes
- If you find yourself out of nutmeg but need it for your recipe I've got the perfect solutions for you. Keep this Nutmeg Substitute guide handy in your kitchen.
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- A homemade Cream of Chicken Soup substitute is an excellent and healthy alternative to the store-bought condensed soup.